How to Increase Water Pressure in Sink

When we turn on the bathroom or kitchen sink faucets in the house, we expect a gush of water so we can clean our hands or wash our dishes easily. Sometimes, though, we may have issues with water pressure. How to increase water pressure in the sink? First, check with the water company to make sure it is not everyone having the issue. Then you can start looking into the other possibilities.

Let’s take a look below at all of the areas to investigate.

Aerator needs to be clean to allow flow of water.

Check the Aerator

The first thing you want to do if you are having issues with the water pressure in the kitchen or bathroom is to check the aerator. You will find that most kitchen faucets have one of these. What is it? It is a fitting that is like a screen and it is screwed onto the spout of the faucet. The purpose of it is to break the water flow into a lot of tiny streams through small holes and to oxygenate the water. Next, the second purpose is to not allow the water to flow all over the place. You may have a clogged aerator because of mineral deposits.

To Fix the Aerator

  1. Use pliers to unscrew and remove the aerator
  2. Turn on the faucet now that the aerator is off. If It is a normal flow, you know what the issue is.
  3. Soak the aerator in a bowl of vinegar overnight to dissolve scale.
  4. Replace or leave it off.
  5. If it is not the aerator, continue reading to the next section.

When the Aerator Is Not the Issue

New Faucet – Have a new faucet that is giving you issues? This can be because there is plumbing tape or other debris stuck inside the faucet.

Older faucet – it may need service and may have debris inside. However, the debris probably is because of the pipes or the water.

Clogged aerator doesn't allow for the flow of water.

Blockage in Faucet

  1. Turn off the water
  2. Unscrew the handles of the faucet
  3. The valve retaining nuts need unscrewing and then you can removed the valves
  4. Grab a bowl and put the valves in with vinegar to dissolve the water deposits.

While the Valves are Out

Remove gaskets – there are internal rubber gaskets you need to remove first.

Flush the housing of the valve- You can do this by turning on the hot and cold water. This allows the water to come out from the valve housing. This should give you a normal flow of water.

Blockage in Pipes

If the low faucet water pressure is not the aerator or something stuck in the faucet, it can be a blockage in pipes. To fix this:

  1. Shut off valves and disconnect the hoses.
  2. Put a bucket under each water valve, fully open the valves, turn on the water and watch the flow.
  3. If there is enough pressure, then the issue is in the faucet.
  4. Low pressure – backflushing the pipes may clear the blockage.
  5. Old pipes – blockage is probably because of rust from the pipes.
Flushing the hot water heater can increase water pressure in sink.

Flushing Water Heater Can Increase Water Pressure in Sink

If the low water pressure problem is only in the hot water pipes, then the culprit may be rust coming from the water heater. Flush the water heater after you have back-flushed the pipes. Additionally, if you have galvanized pipes in your home, call a plumber to inspect them as they may need replacing.

Check The Regulator

Something else to consider is the regulator that is located outside the home. It is either at the service line that enters the home or the meter by the street. The purpose of a regulator is to keep water from rushing through the home and causing a water hammer. If your regulator goes bad, it will cause a reduction in water velocity, which will reduce water pressure on your faucets.

Install A Pressure Booster

Remember, distance and gravity can determine how long it takes for water to get to your home. It can also determine the type of water pressure. So, there are situations where the home might need a pressure booster to assist your flow. A water pressure booster pump is the way to go if your home is a long distance from the municipality’s water source.

How Much Does It Cost

Believe it or not, the average cost to increase the water pressure in your sink is fairly high. You are looking to spend around $800 on a pressure booster. This is just for the unit. The size and features that you select as well as the labor charge will dictate how high the price tag goes. It is not unusual to spend over $1,000 on a project like this. First, troubleshoot your faucet aerator and then decide as to an upgrade.

Other Recommended Maintenance

You might be wondering if you have roots growing into the pipes. To know if there are roots, a sewer scope inspection can be done. This will be able to pinpoint the area where the roots might be growing so the entire sewer system doesn’t have to be torn apart.

Sometimes there may also be sediment in the water lines. How do you clean it out? It is a step-by-step process that involves removing the aerator screens and turning off the water heater. This will clean and flush the sediment from the water lines.

Lastly, if you are having a hard time making hot water last in the house, there are a few areas to check. One of those is to increase the thermostat, maintain the water heater, and refrain from simultaneous usage.

Plumber working on the sink.

When Should I Call A Professional

Anytime you are dealing with a plumbing issue such as low pressure in your faucet you should consider hiring a professionally licensed plumber. Call your local home inspection team to conduct a full home inspection.

While they conduct the inspection, they will be able to tell you what your plumbing needs might be and offer up some reputable professionally licensed plumbing contractors. Then you can reach out to a few of them for various quotes on your potential plumbing needs. This is often the easiest approach as you might not have the time or tools to fix your water pressure concerns.

Conclusion

Losing water pressure is no fun for anyone. No matter the home, you want to have a nice flow of water in your home. Depending upon how far the water has to travel can oftentimes determine the pressure. One area that can affect our water pressure can be the pipes underground. Oftentimes we forget that vegetation such as plants and tree roots can break into our water pipes. If this occurs, you are sure to see a reduction in water pressure.

Once you checked your aerator on the faucet head and cleaned that out as well as flushed your water heater from sediment, you will want to check the yard for any pooling of water. Waypoint Property Inspection East can inspect your pipes inside and outside during a home inspection in South Florida.

Can You Use Duct Tape Instead Of Electrical Tape

You are working on a few projects around the house and might not have all of the supplies that you need. Before starting any projects it is a good idea to make a list of the items that you might need to accomplish the goal. If you need to tape something up or connect an item with tape, you need to make sure that the tape is rated to handle the project. Can you use duct tape instead of electrical tape? It is not recommended. Duct tape has a cloth backing and can cause a fire.

However, duct tape can be used in other capacities over electrical tape. Let’s take a look below at the options.

What Are My Options

Instead of worrying about the tape to connect your electrical wires, there are other alternatives. Using electrical tape that is UL rated for its durability and safety is definitely a key component. However, if you do not have electrical tape available, consider using the following items.

  • Wire Nuts-plastic insulated caps with threading on the inside. Also known as wire connectors. They cover and crimp the ends of each stripped wire in order to connect them and are known as a safe alternative to electrical tape.
  • Shrink Tubing-plastic tube that surrounds two wires. The wires are held together when the tubing is heated and soldered together.
Electrical tape is better for wires.
Electrical tape

Comparing The Two Tapes

When dealing with electrical wires, it is essential to know what can safely be used to connect your wiring without causing a fire.

  • Duct tape is flammable, sticky, and made with a cloth backing, and should not be used in high heat situations.
  • Electrical tape is a stretch vinyl material used for better insulation against an electrical current.

  • Duct tape is not very durable and can break down quickly under various conditions.
  • Electrical tape is more durable and typically lasts longer than duct tape under the same conditions.

  • Duct tape is not suitable for electrical wiring due to its inability to insulate and protect against a live current. While on the other hand, electrical tape is suitable for electrical wiring.

How Much Does It Cost

The cost of duct tape vs electrical tape is trivial. However, using the wrong tape for various jobs could end up costing you a lot. A roll of electrical tape can cost you about $1.75 each or $8.75 for a 10 pack. A roll of duct tape can cost you $8.60 a roll or $25.70 for a 3 pack.

Other Recommended Maintenance

While you are on the topic of electrical wiring and the best ways to connect wires. Consider looking into your GFCI. Determine whether or not your GFCI outlets can protect your ungrounded outlets. It is important to ensure that all electrical components are grounded and keep you free from electric shock or even electrocution.

Challenger GFCI breaker can also cause a fire.
Example of Challenger GFCI Breaker (courtesy of Atkinson Inspection Services)

Another area in the GFCI realm to consider is whether or not the breaker is a challenger breaker. Most GFCI’s are located near water areas in the home. The kitchen, bathrooms, and garage often have GFCI outlets to protect from electrical overload and shock. A Challenger GFCI breaker is not rated correctly and can cause a fire. In order to determine if your home has a challenger breaker box, look inside the paneling door and have the word “test” in yellow on one side and white numbers 15 or 20 on the other side.

Make sure you read up on how to prevent an electrical fire. Using the wrong tape, or a short in the wiring or something else can cause an electrical fire and you need to know how to put it out if it does happen.

Lastly, if you are thinking about laying wires over insulation in the attic, keep in mind that you need insulation that is made of fiberglass material.

When Do I Call A Professional

Anytime you are dealing with electrical wiring and safety you should call on a professional. Electrical tape is the only tape that should be used when connecting wires safely. However, if you do not have the supplies needed to safely connect your wires, you should reach out to a professional. Your best bet is to contact a licensed electrician to ensure that the wirings are safely connected. Some tapes do not have the ability to safely conduct electricity and thus could cause an electrical fire.

Conclusion

Call your local home inspection team to assess the wiring situation. Hiring the right licensed electrician is key to a successful project. Your home inspection team can recommend a great licensed electrician. The electrician can inspect all of your wirings and ensure that they are connected properly. Finding out if some projects were not completed properly is key. You wouldn’t want to live in a home that could be a safety issue. Call Waypoint East for your home inspection and electrical wiring inspection in the South Florida area.

How Long Does Laminate Flooring Last

Looking to buy a home with laminate flooring or even install laminate in your existing home takes some important knowledge about the floors themselves. Take a look at how old the flooring is before buying the home. You may end up with a replacement price tag that you weren’t expecting. In addition, if you are looking to install new laminate floors in your existing home, research the various manufacturers and their product offerings.

Not all products are made equally. How long does laminate flooring last? Laminate flooring lasts an average of 15 to 30 years. Most give you 10 years before looking worn. Various factors such as moisture, spills, water damage, and basic wear and tear, play into how long the laminate flooring lasts.

Let’s take a look below at some more details regarding laminate flooring.

Laminate flooring installation
Laminate flooring installation

Pros of Laminate Flooring

Asking all of the right questions of the flooring professionals allows you to create an aesthetically pleasing environment in your home. Before you decide which flooring to use consider all of the factors and options.

  • Cheaper on the budget
  • Typically will not stain
  • Easy to install
  • Does not promote allergies

Cons of Laminate Flooring

Avoiding all of the negative portions of flooring is key to a successful home experience. These are the main reasons for staying away from laminate flooring.

  • Chemicals present depending upon the manufacturer
  • Typically look fake
  • More likely to get damaged from moisture and water
  • Make a lot of noise when walking on them

How Much Does It Cost

Researching the various manufacturers of laminate flooring is your most important task when determining which one to install. The longevity of a laminate floor is typically based on wear and tear and environmental factors. Choosing a high-quality product made by a reputable manufacturer can give you around 10 years of flooring longevity. The national average for laminate flooring ranges from $3 to $8 per square foot. This is based on floor quality and thickness. The total cost for flooring materials and installation ranges from $1,400 to $3,400.

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Other Recommended Maintenance

While you are learning about how long laminate flooring lasts, it is a good idea to also look into the possibility of laying vinyl flooring over tile. Understanding the substrate of your current flooring allows you to determine if you should lay vinyl flooring over the tile flooring.

Since you are on the topic of flooring, another area that can improve the look of your home are your doors. Selecting between a hollow core door and a solid wood door is certainly a challenge. Read up on the pros and cons of hollow core doors before making your investment.

Water damage on a laminate floor
Water damage on a laminate floor

When Do I Call A Professional

Flooring questions can come up often. When buying a home or looking to enhance a current home, flooring is always one of the topics that are highly discussed. It is recommended that you seek out some professional advice before investing a lot of money into flooring. Luckily, there are a few people that you can talk to.

Seek out your local home flooring store and speak to the professionals to see which type of flooring might last the longest and is most suitable for your home. You should also speak to a local general contractor that is an expert in flooring. If you are not sure who to call, reach out to your local home inspection team for a full flooring evaluation and general contractor recommendation.

Conclusion

Dealing with flooring decisions is always tough. As the homeowner, you never want to make the wrong decision as it could cost you a lot of money. Luckily for you, there are a lot of local resources that can help answer your flooring questions. Start with your local home flooring stores to get an idea of the variety of flooring products. Knowing how long laminate flooring lasts vs other flooring options is key before you invest. Call Waypoint East for your home inspection and flooring inspection in the South Florida area.

How To Clean Window Air Conditioner Mold

Living in a home with no central air conditioning can be an issue for many people. Unfortunately, many northern homes did not come with central air. Homeowners are sometimes forced to install a window air conditioning unit so that they can cool their room or home.

In southern homes, window AC units are often used to reduce the amount of electricity used to keep electric bills down. Often, you can see a window AC unit simply to cool down a specific room, rather than a whole home. With the ac window unit comes necessary cleaning and maintenance.

How to clean window air conditioner mold? This requires a process that any homeowner can achieve by using chemicals, scrub brush, and vacuum.

Let’s take a look below at a detailed process to keeping you healthy and free of mold.

Cleaning supplies for mold removal
Cleaning supplies for mold removal

What Do I Need To Clean

Believe it or not, the recommended items needed to clean mold from your window ac unit are not extensive. The majority of the products are to protect your skin from being exposed to bleach or the mold itself as well as from breathing in the mold spores.

  • Plastic Gloves-needed to protect your hands from mold and chemicals, while you scrub.
  • Face Covering-needed to keep your face safe from exposure to the mold spores and keep you from inhaling them.
  • Plastic Bucket-necessary to mix a solution of water and chemicals to clean the mold spores off the window ac unit.
  • Wet/Dry Vac-used to vacuum dirt, dust, and debris from the window ac unit.
  • Screwdriver-necessary to unscrew the frame that holds the unit into the window.
  • Scrubbing Sponge-necessary to loosen the mold and mildew from the ac unit and its internal coils.
  • Commercial cleaner-spray onto the internal coils of the window ac unit.
  • Dish Soap-used to soak the grille and filter of the window ac unit.
  • Bleach-necessary to kill the mold and mildew spores.

How Can I Prevent Mold Growth

There are a few factors involved in preventing mold growth in your home. Let’s take a look at the list of how you can prevent mold growth.

  • Remove dust-by removing dust from the home, mold will not have any rich food source. Dust, dirt, pollen, and other organic materials are great at becoming starting points for mold growth. Removing them from the equation is key.
  • Fan mode-using the fan mode of the ac unity you will dry out the interior of the ac unit. This keeps the unit from becoming a moisturized zone that mold loves to grow on.
  • Clean the window-don’t forget that your window will need to be cleaned at least two times during the cooler months. Keeping the window sill and frame itself clean and free of dirt and debris will keep the mold from having a petri dish to grow on.

Remember, the Environmental Protection Agency recommends that to properly control mold from growing in and around your home, you will want to keep moisture at the lowest point possible.

Moldy window sill on air conditioning unit
Moldy window sill on air conditioning unit

How Much Does It Cost

Removing mold from your home or central air unit is very expensive. The cost range goes from $3,000 to $10,000 depending on the size of your home and the region that you live in. However, keep in mind that you are completing cleaning maintenance on your ac window unit.

This typically requires the cost of the supplies and cleaning materials that you will use to create a solution that can remove mold from the ac window unit. You’re probably looking at a cost range of $25 to $75 depending on the number of chemicals needed.

Other Recommended Maintenance

Since you are on the topic of cleaning mold from your window ac unit. Why don’t you also explore how to stop mold growth in your home? Understanding these processes is hugely important to your health and well-being.

Areas of mold growth can occur around the window frame or window sill as well. Making sure that the window is sealed properly is the key to this.

Having a window ac unit requires that the window remain partially open and is secured by an extender frame. Water can get in during rainstorms if this is not sealed correctly. Understanding how windows leak during a rainstorm is important information.

While you are at it with regards to understanding how to seal your bathroom shower windows and window ac unit from leaking water that could cause mold and mildew growth, you should explore the windows in your bathrooms.

If you have windows in your shower you need to ensure that they are waterproofed and not leaking. Reading up on this area at the same time you are figuring out how to clean the mold from your window ac unit is a great idea.

Window air conditioner mold on the filter
Window air conditioner mold on the filter

When Do I Call A Professional

Although cleaning mold off an ac window unit filter and screening might seem simple to you as a homeowner. You never can tell if the mold spores have traveled long distances and begun to grow in other places of your home.

Mold spores can travel and begin to affect your walls, windows, and other areas of the home. Calling out your local home inspection company is a great idea at this time. Having peace of mind that all mold is removed from the home is vital to your health.

Conclusion

When cleaning anything related to mold, you should always consult a professional first. It is highly recommended that anything dealing with mold, that you utilize a home inspection service as they can determine if the mold is growing in other areas of your home. Chances are that if the window ac unit has mold spores on it, those spores could travel to other areas of the home. Luckily, Waypoint East can test for mold in the South Florida area.